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Last UAE flight lands in UK as travel ban comes into effect

Written by gaytourism

The last flight from the United Arab Emirates has landed as the UK’s travel ban comes into force.

The UAE, home to megacities Abu Dhabi and Dubai, has been placed on the UK’s “red list” of countries, for which strict travel bans apply.

British Airways flight 104 from Dubai to London Heathrow touched down on UK soil at 12.57pm, three minutes before flights from the UAE were barred from landing in Britain for the foreseeable.

Many Britons in the UAE rushed to make it home before the ban came into effect.

Make-up artist Amy Wilson said she was “lucky” to land back in the UK two hours before the deadline.

“Can’t believe how lucky me and Jack have been with flights, got back from Turkey two hours before the quarantine deadline and getting the last flight home from Dubai before the UK closes its borders to the UAE,” she tweeted. “Someone’s looking out for me.”

Thousands of travellers who had flights routed through the Gulf hubs from destinations in Asia and Australasia have suddenly found themselves stranded.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps announced yesterday last night that flights from the UAE would be banned from 1pm on 29 January, leaving travellers just 20 hours to make alternative arrangements.

The measure is aimed at stopping the South African variant of coronavirus from reaching UK shores. 

While direct flights have been banned, British and Irish citizens and those with residency rights travelling from the UAE can still enter the UK, but they must do so via a third country.

Arrivals from the 33 countries on the UK “red list” – which also includes Portugal, Brazil and the Seychelles – will eventually be subject to hotel quarantine. 

However, from 4am on 29 January, returning Brits from the UAE must isolate at home for 10 days along with their households, according to Mr Shapps.

Many Britons, including some well-publicised social media influencers, are currently in Dubai. 

In an amusing Instagram video, reality television star Jake Quickenden gently mocked the influencers still in Dubai.

“The airports, they’re closing!” he cries in the video. “Get me my bloody case! 

“That was a nightmare. I just packed that quick it was like I was working in Lidl on the checkouts.”